A New Name

I have to admit, I’ve never cared for my name. Maybe it’s because I could never find tokens as a kid for myself because it’s spelled differently. (Stac-‘ie’, not ‘y’, not ‘ey’ like most popular spellings.) I guess my parents were trying to be a little different (unlike today when parents name their kids after fruit and colors…). And now I cringe whenever I hear someone call my name; because it typically means I’m in trouble (yes, even as an adult, I feel like I’m often in ‘trouble’) or I’m needed to do something. (And I hate when I’m called to do something, interrupting me and whatever I was doing). (There’s another message in there, but not for this blog…) So—why am I telling you this? Because Jesus will give us a new name in Heaven—and I can’t wait!
Revelation 2:17 (ESV)...To the one who conquers I will...  give him a white stone, with a new name written on the stone that no one knows except the one who receives it.  In John’s ancient world, a white stone given could mean invitation to a banquet, a badge of friendship or given to one on trial as show that they are acquitted.  Jesus promises that each of His saved ones will receive a white stone, personally from Him- with a special name on it that no one else knows; a private name given to you alone, from Him intimately.  Names have meaning in Hebrew culture, and Jesus has changed the names of several people in Scripture when they began to follow Him, based on what they did for Him and how they served (Jacob to Israel/Simon to Peter/Saul to Paul).  There are only two things that Scripture says we have right now that will last through Eternity: Love (for God and others) and His Word.  The rewards you receive, or fail to receive will be because of these two things: 1) Did you obey God’s Word? 2) Did you do so, out of love?  Based on this, will you be ashamed of how many rewards are burned up, or excited? Will you receive a white stone in the end of days?  And if you do, what name might he engrave on it based on your heart and service?
I started looking up Hebrew names that I’d like to be given with my stone; I didn’t get far; not even all the way through the A’s.  I believe my perfect Hebrew name would be: Aminta: (אַמִינְתָה) (ah-meen-ta): Hebrew name meaning "truth, friendship."  I think I’m truthful, and honest, particularly with friends. (And, I think we all know I’ve been way too honest when it comes to Christ; honest about my failures, anyway.) And then, I had to laugh, because according to the Urban Dictionary, Aminta refers to a female who is sometimes awkward, makes mistakes, talks too much, gets angry, talks loud, is too honest, has mood swings, but is herself.  BOY- If that doesn’t describe me to a tee!  And side note, the Greek meaning is “defender, protector”… and I’d like to think that when it comes to my family, friends and God, I will defend to the end, and protect at all costs {verbally that is- I’m WAY too prissy to fight!}

So I guess we’ve come full circle, once again, about what you’re doing for God.  What are your sacrifices? What is your motivation?  Remember, “loving others is not a one-time decision, it’s a lifestyle” (Chip Ingram- Spiritual Simplicity).  We’ve got to do more, be more, love more.  Don’t you want your white stone?